Government of Canada celebrates youth leaders and promotes accessibility for Canadians with disabilities

News release

April 12, 2018                    Surrey, British Columbia                   Employment and Social Development Canada

Today, the Honourable Kirsty Duncan, Minister of Science and Minister of Sport and Persons with Disabilities, met with community youth leaders to highlight their efforts in building a more inclusive and accessible Canada. These young leaders were some of the recipients of funds through the youth stream of the Enabling Accessibility Fund (EAF) and played a leadership role in addressing accessibility barriers in their community.

The youth innovation pilot funded a total of nine youth-driven projects of up to $10,000 each. These projects empowered young leaders to work with organizations to increase accessibility for people with disabilities in Canadian communities and workplaces. Our youth are the leaders of tomorrow, and it is important to involve them in making their communities more accessible.

Jacquelyn Perry worked with Feral Boardsports to get funding for the Paddle Board Modification to Support Accessibility project. This project received $716 in funding through the EAF for the purchase of two paddle board back rests and two kayak paddles.

Alex Magnussen worked with the Peace Arch Hospital and Community Health Foundation to get funding for the All Abilities All Ages Playground project. This project received $10,000 in funding through the EAF for the construction of an accessible playground.

Sierra Dean worked with the Semiahmoo House Society to get funding for the Beach Wheelchair project. This project received $4,906 in funding through the EAF for the purchase of a beach wheelchair and the modification of two existing beach wheelchairs.

Quotes

“Our youth play a key role in making Canada a place where people from all walks of life have the same opportunities to achieve their goals and fully contribute in their communities and workplaces. I am grateful to the youth leaders that participated in the Enabling Accessibility Fund youth innovation pilot. Their work helped to spread awareness and improve accessibility for people with disabilities. We are proud of your work and hope you have inspired others in your communities to get involved.

– The Honourable Kirsty Duncan, Minister of Science and Minister of Sport and Persons with Disabilities

“We are very pleased to receive this grant towards the All Abilities All Ages Playground in partnership with the City of White Rock. Interacting with nature and enjoying outdoor physical activity is a cornerstone of a healthy lifestyle—an experience that should be enjoyed by all residents of our community regardless of age or ability. Not only does it provide exercise and fresh air, but the opportunity for social interaction and connection.”

– Stephanie Beck, Executive Director, Peace Arch Hospital Foundation

“I think it is a great privilege to have the opportunity to be a part of a grant that gives so much money. We are becoming really progressive for inclusion and to have a small part in that is an honour. I can’t wait to see the All Abilities Park built in White Rock. It is going to be great to see kids playing, intergenerational connections made and all abilities enjoying the space. This shows kids that we care about inclusion. This has been an amazing experience.”

– Alexander Magnussen, Chair, Self-Advocates of Semiahmoo

Quick facts

  • Since the creation of the Enabling Accessibility Fund (EAF) in 2007, the Government of Canada has funded over 3,000 projects, helping Canadians gain access to their communities’ programs, services and workplaces.

  • Starting in 2018–19, the EAF grants and contributions budget will grow to $20.65 million, as Budget 2017 provided $77 million ($70 million in grant and contribution funding and $7 million in operational funding) over 10 years to expand the activities of the EAF and support more small and mid-sized projects, including youth‑driven proposals, aimed at improving accessibility in Canadian communities and workplaces.

  • On March 29, 2018, the Government of Canada launched its second funding opportunity for mid-sized projects under the EAF. The mid-sized projects component was first launched in 2010 and since then has undergone changes to better suit the needs of applicants, including making the objective and parameters of the call for concepts more precise.

Associated links

Contacts

For media enquiries, please contact:

Annabelle Archambault
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Sport and Persons with Disabilities
819-934-1122 / TTY: 1-866-702-6967
annabelle.archambault@canada.ca

Media Relations Office
Employment and Social Development Canada
819-994-5559
media@hrsdc-rhdcc.gc.ca
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